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There are six main reasons that can be explained why there is an increasing in obesity both in adults and children in United States.
First of all is technological change. Technological change is seem to be a positive change to society. It improve agriculture, transportation, health care, industries and etc., but why technological change is a main cause of an increasing in obesity. Firstly, improvement in agricultural sector which effected by technological change can increase large number of obese persons. Because of technological change, planting, harvesting and raising animals are more easier. Farmers do not have to do everything by themselves, for example, they use tractors to sow seeds, instead of hiring a lot of farmers to do. Moreover, nowadays, farmers use insecticide to prevent losses. Both tractors and insecticide are productions which be produced from technology and innovation. This is a positive change to society since costs of agricultural products decrease. However, this is also a negative effect that causes people to gain weight. A decrease in costs of agricultural product affects to a decrease in price of food and groceries. Price is a sensitive effect for everybody because it measures the amount of money that they spend for goods and services, so changing in price of food and groceries directly affects to people consumption.
If price of food and groceries increases, people will buy less of food and groceries because they have the same amount of budget. On the other hand, if price of food increases, people will buy more which is they will consume more. That is a cause of an increasing in obesity.
Secondly, the technological change in food industry creates new types of food such as instant noodle, frozen food, ice cream, and can food. These food are easy to prepare and eat which convenient for everyone who does not have enough time to prepare his or her own meal. However, these type of foods are not good for health. They include a lot of sodium, sugar, MSG and preservative which have negative effects to health. These food are also high caloric food that cause a weight gaining.
Thirdly, the technological change in home kitchen can arise obesity. It goes side by side with the technological change in food industry. The example of new technological home kitchen is microwave. Microwave is easy to use, even people who cannot cook, they know how to use microwave. A reason that it goes together with food industry is most of new types of food using microwave to cook. Since it is convenient and easy to use, people can prepare their meals many times a day with it.
Moreover, food that can cook by microwave are frozen food and instant food, so people who usually use microwave get more caloric intake. Fourthly, other technological change such as transportation and digital network decrease physical activities which also cause an increasing in obesity. Nowadays, people are more comfortable because they drive to one place to other places instead of walk or bike even though distant between two places is not far. Moreover, if they are hungry, but they cannot go out or too lazy to go out, they can ask for food delivery. In addition, people can shop online. They can buy everything through their computers or smartphones. Even though, food delivery and online shopping were created for saving times and costs of going out, it cannot be denied that physical activities of each person in every day life are decreasing. Even if humans eat in the same amount, their weight will increase and the possibility of being obese persons will increase because the calorie out which calculate from exercising, BMR, and physical activities are less than calories intake that measure from calorie of eaten food.
Second reason is eating out at fast-food restaurant and full-serviced restaurant. Undoubtedly, most fast food restaurants sell high caloric food such as fried chicken, burger, fries, pizza, ice-cream and cola. These food consist of oil and salt or cream and sugar which cannot be eaten too much. Similarly to full-served restaurant, even though there are low caloric food in the restaurant but most are high caloric food. Hence, person who always eats out at fast-food restaurant or full-serviced restaurant have a higher possibility to gain weight which is an increase in possibility of being obese person.
Third reason is an increasing in working woman. More women choose to work instead of being a housewife. In some families, salary of woman before get marry is higher than salary of man, so to maintain their income there is no reason to quite work for being a housewife. Moreover, this is not the era that women cannot work, there are many work that is suitable for woman than man, and there is an equality in woman and man, so many women decide to be working women. This is one of the important reason that causes an increasing in obesity because home meal preparation is decreasing. When woman started to work, she has to go to work at morning and come back on evening or at night, so it is easier to buy food from restaurant instead of preparing by herself. Since food from restaurants is not good for health as home cooking and contains high calorie, the possibility of being obese is higher. In addiction, if that family have children, their children tend to be overweight because in the morning they eat food that their mothers can make as fast as they can such as frozen food or sugary cereal.
Forth reason is the crackdown on smoking via tax increases. Smoking, without a doubt, is not good for health so government imposed tax on cigarette. When price of cigarette increases, with the same budget constraint, many people cannot afford. Hence there are many people stopped smoking. Because there is no more nicotine stimulate pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) to decrease hungriness, people who stopped smoking want to eat more. Therefore, people who stopped smoking gain weight.
Fifth reason is a gaining in income. When an increase in income is an increase in budget constraint, so budget content curve shifts to the right. That is an increase in income have an effect to people to consume more and increase opportunity to eating outside. Hence, a gaining in income is a part of reason that obesity increases.
Final reason is health insurance. People who joined health insurance change their behaviours. Some of them do something that is not good for health such as eating more high caloric food and quitting exercising because they think that they have health insurance so there is no worry with cost of hospitalisation. Therefore health insurance decrease people’s health consciousness and responsibility. Hence a possibility of people who join health insurance to be obese is high.
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